A growing economy like South Africa is bound to face challenges such as the shortage of electricity, Mr David Mabuza told Members of Parliament.
During a session of the National Assembly on Wednesday afternoon, the vice president was answering a question about the government's efforts to improve youth employment in the light of the fourth industrial revolution.
Member of Parliament John Steenhuisen commented that a requirement for the fourth industrial revolution was electricity, before asking a question.
Mabuza responded to the comment, saying the lack of electricity was "a sign of growth."
"Yesterday, electricity was given to only a few people and today electricity is given to millions of people," he said. "Of course, as we grow, we are going to face growth challenges."
African Christian Democratic Party leader Kenneth Meshoe also asked how the government would create jobs while the country faced energy security challenges.
In response, Mabuza said the government has initiated public employment programs, such as the expanded public works program. There are also training opportunities for low-skilled and unskilled people who have not had opportunities to attend school. The training colleges are, moreover, providing vocational skills more suited to the needs of the economy.
He added that the government supported the development of small businesses as a driver of economic growth.
Amendments to the Competition Law have also been approved to deal with monopolies and provide opportunities for small businesses.
Fourth Industrial Revolution
Speaking specifically of interventions related to the fourth industrial revolution, Mabuza referred to the political interventions in education announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa.
In addition to realigning the basic education curriculum, the government will study private sector partnerships for skills development, among other things.
He told the National Assembly that the government encouraged investment in research and encouraged innovation.